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How to file a tax return: step-by-step guide, necessary documents

The deadline for deferred filing of an ITR (tax return) for AY 2021/22 is March 31. An employee who has not filed an ITR for AY 21/22 by the due date is invited to file on March 31.

Here’s everything you need to know about filing ITRs

Choose from four types of forms – ITR 1, ITR 2, ITR 3 and ITR 4 – depending on the sources of income.

Residents, for example, with less than 50 lakh annual income, no more than one owned and minimum house (less than 5,000) farm income must file ITR 1.

More details on which form to select are given in the flowchart below:

Courtesy of ANI

List of documents required to complete the selected ITR

Remember to have all relevant documents at hand before you begin the e-filing process.

> Bank and postal savings account

> PPF passbook

> Salary statements

> Aadhar card and PAN (permanent account number)

> Home loan statement from the bank (if applicable)

> Evidence to claim deductions under Section 80D to 80U (if applicable)

> Form-16 (this is issued to you by your employer and contains details of tax withheld at source, if any, as well as details of wages paid)

There are also three related forms – 16A, 16B and 16C – that you may need.

Form-16A is required if TDS is deducted on payments (to you) other than salary – such as fixed or recurring deposit interest – beyond the limits specified by applicable tax laws.

Form-16B is required if you have sold a property; it shows TDS deducted on the amount paid to you.

Form-16C is required if you are renting a property; it comes from the tenant and details the TDS deducted from the rents collected by you.

Form 26AS – this is an annual statement which includes the details of the TDS

Step-by-step guide to filing the tax return

Log on to the Department of Income Tax portal (www.incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in). If you don’t have an account yet, sign up using your PAN. This will serve as your user ID.

Step 1: Download the appropriate ITR form

Under ‘download’, navigate to ‘e-filing’ under the relevant tax year and select the appropriate ITR form.

2nd step: Download the returns preparation software (Excel utility). Follow the instructions and make sure the auto-populated details match those on your Form 16.

Step 3: Calculate relevant tax details

Calculate tax payable, pay tax, if applicable, and enter relevant challan details.

If you are not subject to tax, you can skip this step.

Step 4: Confirm the above details

Confirm the details you entered and generate an XML file.

Step 5: Submit return

Go to the “Submit Return” section and upload the XML file.

Step 6: Confirmation of ITR verification

A message confirming successful e-filing flashes on your screen. The Acknowledgment Form – ITR-Verification will be emailed to your registered email id.

Step 7: E-verify the return

E-verify the return via any of the six modes below: Netbanking, Bank ATM, Aadhaar OTP, Bank Account Number, Demat Account Number and Registered Mobile Number and Email ID. Electronic verification eliminates the need to send a physical copy of the ITR-5 acknowledgment to CPC, Bengaluru.

(With ANI entries)